Rinku Singh during his 29-ball 46 on Friday. Pic/AFP
Explosive left-hander Rinku Singh has emerged as a "contender" for the finisher's spot in India's T20 World Cup squad, according to Ashish Nehra, but the former India pacer also believes that the batter will face stiff challenge for the position from fellow cricketers. The T20 World Cup will be played in the West Indies and the USA in June next year.
Rinku has been in blazing form in the ongoing five-match T20I series against Australia, and, in the fourth match in Raipur on Friday, his 46 off 29 balls was vital in India's 3-1 series-clinching 20-run win. "There is no doubt that Rinku Singh is a contender for inclusion in India's T20 World Cup squad," the former left-arm pacer told Jio Cinema.
"But the World Cup is still far away and the spot he's fighting for has many challengers." Rinku has played some defining knocks in the ongoing series. His 31 not out from nine balls played a big role in India's 44-run win in the second T20I at Thiruvananthapuram.
With no clarity on whether Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli will be in India's scheme of things for the global showpiece, there could be major changes in the T20 squad for the World Cup and Rinku could emerge as a leading contender for the slog overs. "You can look at Jitesh Sharma [wicketkeeper-batter] and Tilak Varma. We'll have to discuss the positions where Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav and Hardik Pandya will play," the cricketer-turned-commentator said.
"So, we have to see how many spots are available in the 15-member squad. But one thing is sure, he [Rinku] has opened everyone's eyes and put everyone under pressure. But there's still a lot of time to go. The trip to South Africa is coming up followed by the IPL," averred Nehra.
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